“Someone has dropped a bucket of orange paint in Valencia,” remarks the parrot at the Mercat to the sparrow of San Joan. The animals are the city’s two most loquacious weather vanes and regard the bat that has sat atop the city’s shield, without them being able to prevent it, with suspicion.

Some of the paint has stained the orange fields, varnishing the home of what is regarded as some of the world’s finest citrus fruit with the glossy hue.

Some has tinted its famous moon, implausibly large but impossible to capture on a mobile phone, although that doesn’t stop visitors from trying.

The orange ink has also seeped into the veins of some of the wood used to make furniture—a trade in which the city’s inhabitants are highly skilled—and in the fire that will consume part of this wood in the city’s traditional Fallas festival.

It has even impregnated the brocade of the Queen of La Fallas’ dress.

Everything in Valencia—from the old cathedral to the City of Arts and Sciences, including the horizon seen from the beach of Malvarrosa—appears as if seen through an orange filter that makes the city sparkle and catches people’s eyes. Perhaps this is why Instagram has named one of its most magical filters after the city of Valencia.

“I do hope no one will pick up that bucket of spilt paint,” responds the sparrow before turning towards the east.